Love is in the air at Victoria’s Royal BC Museum this fall, with Fatal Attraction, an interactive exhibition that reveals the sometimes sensual, often flashy – occasionally dangerous – courtship rituals of the animal kingdom.
Learn how the birds and the bees – and fish, amphibians, insects and mammals – meet and seduce potential mates; discover their private languages of love; and find out who lives happily ever after.
Through interactive displays, videos and lively examples, visitors will meet:
-A spider that ‘perfumes’ her web to attract a mate;
-A female fish that lights up when courting, and the male’s flashy reaction;
-The primate that changes colour when he’s excited.
Next, Fatal Attraction focuses on the animals’ methods of avoiding mixed messages, making their intentions clear:
-Lady lobster sends her scent into a male’s burrow; if he’s interested, he invites her in.
-A little lizard puffs up the colourful skin of his throat to show he’s available.
-To make sure the females can find Nemo (a clown fish), he swims in rapid zigzags when he’s looking for a date.
The fatal in Fatal Attraction is also explained. It’s a tough world out there, with profiteers and impostors lurking too close for comfort. Attracting and seducing a mate is no always a no-risk business, as predators may also read the signals. Some of them can imitate the courting signs of other animals and lure their prey to their doom. Discover just how deadly love can be.
Fatal Attraction was created by natural history museums in Belgium, The Netherlands and France. The North American tour is presented by the Alliance of Natural History Museums of Canada and coordinated by the Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, ON.
Fatal Attraction runs Oct. 5, 2006, to Jan. 7, 2007. For more information, visit www.royalbcmuseum.bc.ca or call 1-888-447-7977.